Gambling And COVID-19: How The Pandemic Brought Gamblers Online
If 2020 can be described with one word, it would be “change.” The past ear changed a lot in the lives of people. It changed the way most people view their hygiene and health, it changed who people value important resources and essentials, and it changed how people levied their lives entirely. What used to be loud and fun festivities either canceled entirely or pushed through with limited participation. By the time 2020 ended, life was changed completely, and perhaps even permanently. As with all other sectors that were hit by the effects of the global pandemic that hit last year, the world of gambling also faced not a small number of challenges, and fortunately, through the help of technology, it managed to stay afloat even during these extremely tough times.
This is where online gambling comes in. When you go online and compare the best casinos, you can find that there are now at least thousands, if not tens of thousands, of them online. However, the industry of online betting did not start only with the pandemic. It had been here for more than a decade now. But how did COVID-19 and its aftermath helped give the online gambling industry a much-needed and much-deserved boost? Here are some of the most essential things you should know.
An overview of online gambling history
There is no clear evidence as to when and how online gambling began, but one thing is for sure: it was in the 1990s when Microgaming, a tech company that still develops and releases online gambling software to this day, along with Cryptologic, were the first people to venture into the online gambling world.
As the years passed, online gambling grew. More game developers emerged, more countries opened up their doors and made online gambling legal or at least accepted offshore betting as a legal activity. As smartphones started getting more and more advanced and applications of many thighs are developed, casino owners decided it is time to go into mobile gaming. Thus, was the birth of online casino apps. Now, anyone with an app and a working internet connection can play their favorite casino games for real money–anytime and anywhere.
How the global pandemic boosted online gambling
In the early parts of 2020, particularly around March, most countries of the world had to deal with the threat of the virus causing the COVID-19 disease. As part of the precautionary measures, lockdowns and community quarantines were imposed everywhere, forcing everyone to stay at home. Businesses that were not deemed as “essentials” were forced to close down, and only those providing essential goods and services–a supermarket and a hospital, for example–are allowed limited operation.
Since land-based casinos are classified as entertainment and leisure establishments, it was closed down as well. Sports were also put on hiatus. This was the scene for most industries for most of the year. For those who are into gambling, they were forced to find a new way to bet–to continue with their usual hobby and as well as to take their mind away from the anxiety and the stress that the whole situation had caused everyone.
Now that more people had gone into online gambling, would this mean that there would be fewer people to go to the casinos once everything starts going back to the old normal? No one knows for sure, but land-based gambling is here to stay. If anything, online and land-based gambling are more likely to co-exist and support each other rather than kill either with their growth or eventual recovery.